The profound importance of forging connections with others lies in the enrichment of our lives, the broadening of our perspectives, and the nurturing of shared experiences that transcend the boundaries of individual existence. Actor and singer-songwriter Barry Conrad found this necessity to connect. The 'Banter with BC' show was born. "In my industry especially, it can be quite isolating. A lot of people feel like they lose something by connecting with others, it can get territorial and I've never really understood that," he shares. The show aims to beautifully encapsulate the essence of bridging interpersonal gaps, as it illustrates the transformative power of reaching out, fostering meaningful connections, embracing personal growth through shared knowledge, and spreading a sense of love and belonging across diverse audiences. "Plus, it combines two things I love: great food and great conversation! I'm really enjoying it!" he exclaims.
Plus, it combines two things I love: great food and great conversation!
Barry recollects when asked about a significant life-changing incident that made him the man he is today. "When I had a pulmonary embolism a few years ago (which is like the lung equivalent of a heart attack), where a blood clot formed in my left leg, shot up and killed off half of my left lung."
This poignant reflection unveils a journey of uncertainty and physical struggle, highlighting his immense resilience and determination required to overcome adversity. Underscoring an arduous rehabilitation process and unwavering commitment to rebuilding strength and regaining the ability to engage in fundamental activities, which ultimately instilled a profound appreciation for the simple joys and triumphs of daily life. "The doctors said that if I weren't as in good health as I was, I probably wouldn't have made it that day. That definitely changed me and the way I see the world, in the best way," the actor says.
A conversation with Barry will not be complete if the music topic is not brought up. "I'm constantly getting ideas and often while doing the most ordinary things: going for a walk, driving, taking a shower, buying groceries (laughs)." On occasion, inspiration strikes in the form of a melodic progression, while other times it arrives as a harmonious convergence of both melody and lyrics simultaneously. Whenever inspiration strikes, he quickly retrieves his phone to capture the fleeting ideas before they vanish from memory.
"When I listen back though, sometimes I'm like, 'What was I thinking? This sucks!', but other times I know that I've got to write the song and see it through to the end." Simultaneously, he recognizes the value of discipline in the creative process. Thus, even in the absence of all-consuming inspiration, the songwriter carves out designated time in his schedule to write, resolute in his commitment to the craft. For it is imperative to bear in mind that the elusive elixir of inspiration and motivation will not perpetually course through our veins. Hence, seizing the opportunity for action, particularly in the present landscape, assumes paramount significance in my artistic journey.
"Taking action, especially now, is something that's really important to me," he concludes.
Barry Conrad is in the process of writing new music, so stay tuned. In the meanwhile watch the first 3 episodes of Banter with BC.
MIXER is musivv's segment featuring artists from outside the UAE and the Middle East. Features under this segment are eligible for a nomination under this category in the Musivv Awards’ annual recognition.